Survivors demand US investigation of Mississippi abuse deals

JACKSON, Mississippi (AP) — Catholic sex abuse survivors in two states have called on federal authorities to investigate the allegations of three black Mississippi men that they were molested by Franciscan friars during the mid-1990s, when they were as young as 9 years old.

Mark Belenchia, the Mississippi leader of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, issued a statement calling for federal law enforcement agencies to “pursue any federal charges that may be possible due to the interstate transmission of the victims for the purpose of rape and exploitation by abusive clergymen.”

In Wisconsin, SNAP urged federal prosecutors to investigate the Franciscans that sponsored the two alleged abusers.

An Associated Press investigation found that Franciscans paid two of the men $15,000 each to keep silent about their claims and never file lawsuits.

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